Out singer Matt Zarley just finished recording a holiday song called "I’m Your Angel," which is released this week on iTunes and Amazon as a benefit for the grassroots organization Backpacks For The Street, a movement to bring compassion and dignity to the streets and helping to make the lives of those experiencing homeless a little bit easier.
Zarley and his singing partner Jeb Havens have masterfully crafted an amazing sound for the original song.
The idea to create a backpack program for the homeless came about in late February, 2018, during a brain storming session. HIV activist Jeffrey Newman and his boyfriend Jayson Conner were beginning the preliminary work on Together Helping Others Inc., their full service nonprofit for those living on the street.
Realizing that it would take a good year or so to really create the kind of nonprofit they felt is needed, they were not content to sit idly by and not actively doing something to help people living on the street. That’s when one of the J’s said, “Why don’t we kick off with a backpacks program.”
Founder Newman told Plus magazine for World AIDS Day about the other factor that makes their mission all the more urgent and that was the remarkable number of homeless LGBT youth he’s met who are being ravaged by HIV and AIDS.
Newman says, "Earlier this year, a colleague emailed me and asked if I could visit a homeless trans youth named Rayne, who was in the hospital with AIDS related illnesses. The morning I was to see Rayne, I had a family emergency and moved my visit to the following morning. That morning never came. She died hours later before she turned 30."
He continues, "I think about Rayne, and our LGBT youth, especially those who are homeless and on the streets — and I’ve met many with our Backpacks For The Streets nonprofit for the homeless — who are getting sick and dying, because they only hear that AIDS is over. It’s not."
Zarley's song has got all the fun loving stuff you want during the holidays: Christmas songs, gay apparel, and a dope nonprofit. All proceeds from sales will be earmarked to help homeless LGBT youth through their 501c3.